As a mom, it's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of family life, often putting your own needs on the back burner.
When you're struggling to find the time and energy to nourish properly, it's important to take simple, manageable steps to ensure you're getting the nutrition you need. This gentle guide is here to help you navigate the journey toward self-nourishment, recognizing that everyone's circumstances are unique, and there's no one-size-fits-all approach.
Level 1: Getting Started - Basic Nourishment
If you find it challenging to eat enough, stay hydrated, or maintain regular meals, start here. Remember, there's no shame in facing these struggles, especially if you're dealing with mental health issues or are neurodivergent like those with ADHD or autism. The key at this stage is simplicity and consistency. Focus on:
Eating Something: Whether it's a sandwich, prepped food from the grocery store like rotisserie chicken, pre-made salads, pre-cut fruit, cheese, or deli meat, choose simple, convenient options that require minimal preparation.
Staying Hydrated: Don't forget to drink fluids throughout the day. Sparkling water, herbal teas, or even infused water with slices of citrus or cucumber can make drinking fluids more appealing.
The primary goal at this level is to establish a routine of eating regularly and staying hydrated. Food and fluids are basic needs for everyone.
Level 2: Progressing Towards Balance
Once you've established a routine of regular meals and hydration, it's time to consider the next step: creating more balanced meals. Balanced meals help provide your body and brain with the necessary fuel to function optimally.
Start by adding a source of protein to each of your meals. Protein and healthy fats are essential for energy and overall well-being. Here are some simple options to consider:
Canned Fish or Seafood: Quick and packed with protein and healthy fats.
Eggs: Versatile and rich in nutrients, eggs can be prepared in various ways.
Roasted Nuts and Seeds: A convenient and nutritious snack option.
Hummus: Pair it with veggies or whole-grain crackers for a satisfying snack.
Chicken, Fish, and Meat: Incorporate these protein sources into your meals as per your dietary preferences.
Increasing your protein intake can boost your energy levels and capacity, helping you feel more vibrant and focused.
Level 3: Adding Nutrient-Dense Foods
If you have the capacity to take your self-nourishment journey further, consider incorporating nutrient-dense foods into your diet.
These foods provide maximum nutrients per bite, supporting your overall health by optimizing your bodies functioning with the nutrients it needs to do its many jobs. A simple approach is to include a serving of vegetables (or fruit) with each meal, along with your protein source.
Other nutrient-dense foods to think about including:
Organ Meats (like liver and heart): Exceptionally rich in essential nutrients.
Cold Water Fish: High in omega-3 fatty acids and vital nutrients.
Dark Green Leafy Vegetables: Packed with vitamins and minerals.
Bivalve Shellfish (clams, mussels, oysters): Excellent sources of essential minerals.
Crustaceans: Crab, lobster, and shrimp offer a nutrient boost.
Meat, Eggs, Milk: Quality animal products are nutrient powerhouses.
Canned Fish with Bones: Provides essential calcium and other nutrients.
Butter and Cheese: Rich in healthy fats and fat-soluble vitamins.
Take these steps at your own pace, focusing on what feels manageable for you.
Your well-being is a journey, and every step counts.
Your Dietitian Doula
P.S. - Bonus: Your Free Nutrition Guide for Low-Capacity Days
As you continue your self-nourishment journey, consider downloading my free nutrition guide for those days when you have limited capacity. This resource offers quick and easy meal ideas to help you stay nourished during challenging times.
Download it here: https://www.amymarshall.ca/strugglemeals
Remember, self-care through nourishment is a valuable investment in your well-being, allowing you to face the demands of motherhood with more ease and capacity.
You can also email me if you are curious about working with me.